|Publication number||US7051446 B2|
|Application number||US 10/915,761|
|Publication date||May 30, 2006|
|Filing date||Aug 11, 2004|
|Priority date||May 24, 2004|
|Also published as||US7299559, US7513054, US20050257390, US20060201009, US20080052938|
|Publication number||10915761, 915761, US 7051446 B2, US 7051446B2, US-B2-7051446, US7051446 B2, US7051446B2|
|Inventors||John B. Moss|
|Original Assignee||Moss John B|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (29), Referenced by (4), Classifications (21), Legal Events (4)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 60/573,967 filed May 24, 2004, the subject matter of which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety.
This invention relates generally to tools, and more specifically to layout and evaluation tools used for construction projects.
A variety of tools exist which are used to layout construction sites and evaluate existing structures or construction projects in progress. Carpenters, for example, are often charged with layouts and construction of various projects. For example, wall framing and finishing, roofline construction and finishing, banister and railing construction, patio and deck construction, and framing for sidewalks, pathways, and the like often require great attention to design details which carpenters, among others, must incorporate into the final construction. One problem which carpenters must face is accurate and efficient location of angles and distances in laying out construction sites, and in cutting construction materials to complete projects.
A variety of tools exist which carpenters presently use to measure angles for layout of construction sites and fabrication of structures. For example, roofing or framing squares and various protractor tools are available which allow carpenters and construction tools to measure angles for site layout and to mark construction pieces for cutting during fabrication of a structure. Such known angle measuring tools are, however, disadvantaged in several aspects.
For example, except for very small layouts and small construction components, it typically takes two workers to layout sites, measure larger pieces for fabrication, and evaluate existing constructions or constructions in progress. One worker is typically needed to hold the measuring tool at a predetermined location, while another worker is needed to extend a string line to a location some distance away from the tool. In a cooperative manner, the worker with the measuring tool directs the worker with the string line to adjust the position of the string until the desired angle is obtained, and then to set a marker on the site (e.g., a stake or a flag) or to mark a construction workpiece for cutting. For various reasons, however, it is not always easy to dedicate two workers to such tasks, and it would be desirable if such tasks could be efficiently performed by only one person, potentially saving time and expense for construction projects.
Additionally, existing tools are generally designed for use in one particular orientation by the user (e.g., measurement from a horizontal edge). If a user attempts to use the tool in another orientation (e.g., measurement from a vertical position), the user must adapt and use the tool differently, sometimes requiring mathematical computation or adjustment to the reading of the tool to measure or mark certain angles. It would be desirable to provide a tool which may be more or less universally used in the same manner in a variety of positions and orientations by the user, thereby simplifying use of the tools and prevent mistakes due to mathematical errors.
Still further, when evaluating existing structures for improvement, repair, or finishing work, known layout and measuring tools are not that helpful in determining angles. For example, on-site determination of the pitch of a roof, an unknown angle between two elements, or the centerline of a circle or arc is generally determined by measurement of distances and mathematical formulas, and not by direct measurement with tools. It would be desirable to provide a tool that is more capable of directly evaluating existing structures without mathematical computation.
According to an exemplary embodiment, an angle measurement and layout tool is provided. The tool comprises a support portion configured to seat against an edge of a construction workpiece, and a guide portion extending from the support portion. The guide portion has opposite faces with each face having measurement indicia thereon, and the measurement indicia is differently arranged on each of the opposite faces.
Optionally, the support portion may comprise a corner bracket, and the support portion may be configured to be attached to an edge of the construction workpiece. The support portion may include a first slot and a second slot spaced from the first slot, the first and second slots positioned relative to a respective one of the opposite faces of the guide portion to accurately measure angles when a reference line is extended from each of the first and second slots to the corresponding face of the guide portion. At least one extension arm attachable to the corner bracket may be provided, with a portion of the extension arm extending parallel to the ledge.
According to another exemplary embodiment a construction layout tool is provided. The tool comprises a support portion configured to seat against an edge of a construction workpiece, and the support portion comprises a flat ledge and a corner bracket. A guide portion extends from the support portion, and the guide portion has layout measurement indicia thereon.
According to another exemplary embodiment, a construction layout and angle measurement tool is provided. The tool comprises a support portion comprising a flat ledge and a corner bracket extending from the ledge. Each of the ledge and corner bracket define a slot for a reference line, and the slots of each of the ledge and the corner bracket are different from one another. A guide portion extends from the support portion, and the guide portion has opposite faces each having layout measurement indicia thereon. The measurement indicia of one of the faces corresponds to the slot of the ledge, and the measurement indicia of the other of the faces corresponds to the slot of the corner bracket, wherein when a reference line is extended through one of the slots and across the corresponding face of the guide portion, the orientation of the line with respect to the guide portion may accurately establish a desired layout or determine an unknown layout.
In yet another embodiment, an angle measurement and layout tool is provided. The tool comprises a support portion configured to receive a corner of a workpiece, and a guide portion extending from the support portion and marked with measurement indicia corresponding to the corner of the workpiece. The measurement indicia include at least one of an angular degree indicia and slope indicia.
For the reasons explained below, and unlike known tools, the tool 100 may be capably used by one person to, among other things, quickly approximate construction site layouts without the need or assistance of another person; snap lines with a chalk line at angles and pitches on common building materials along straight edges or from a 90° corner of the materials without the aggravation of the chalk-line clip sliding or falling off the mark; find unknown angles from one point to another over short or long areas depending on length of string used with the tool; establish known angles; find an unknown actual degree of incline when using a plumbob with the toil; find an unknown roof pitch quickly and easily; find a centerline of a circle or a construction arc; provide an anchor, even along a vertical edge), for a chalk line clip or a plumbob; function as a level along a horizontal plane when used with a plumbob; and allow hands free use of the tool. The versatile tool 100 simplifies construction layout, fabrication and evaluation tasks by directly finding and establishing desired angles and key points for construction purposes without requiring time consuming mathematical computation and creative use and adaptation of existing tools to determine angles, slopes and key construction parameters, thereby avoiding potential mistakes associated with mathematical computation and known tools. The tool may be rather universally used in a variety of positions (e.g., vertical, horizontal, and inclined positions) to accomplish a wide variety of tasks.
As illustrated in
As explained in detail below, the guide portion 102 includes opposite faces 108 and 110 extending between the inner and outer edges 105 and 106. The faces 108 and 110 include markings or indicia (not shown in
As will become evident below, the tool 100 has two opposite working sides or faces. Each side is unique in application and script layout for measuring or determining angles, and each has its own individual pivot point or string slot to be used for that intended side or face. One side of the tool is for use on straight edges or baselines and the other side of the tool is for use on 90° corners.
Referring now to
A cross member 134 extends between the ledges 120 above the corner bracket 122, and in an exemplary embodiment, the cross member 134 is a beam having opposite faces 136 and 138 which extend parallel to the respective faces 108 and 110 of the guide portion 102 (shown in
A slot 144 is formed in a lower edge 146 of the cross member 134, and the slot is substantially aligned with the reference point 142 such that when a reference line is received in the slot 144, the reference line substantially coincides with the reference point 142 for measuring an angle of the reference line with respect to the tool 100 using the guide portion 102. Additionally, the slot 132 in the corner bracket 122 is aligned with the reference point 142 on a radial centerline of the guide portion 102 and is located approximately a radial distance R1 (shown in
The top surface 140 of the cross member 134 is substantially flush with a top surface 148 of the support ledges 120. That is, the top surface 140 of the cross member 134 is in the plane of the support ledges 120. The ledges 120 may therefore be seated against an edge of a workpiece (not shown) such as lumber, drywall, or plywood, to align the tool 100 with respect the workpiece, and the reference point 142 will likewise be located along the edge of the workpiece, while the sight members 129 extend over the surface of the workpiece and assist in aligning the reference point 142 with a location mark or tick mark on the workpiece, which shall be demonstrated in the exemplary applications of the tool 100 which are described below.
In one embodiment, each of the guide portion 102 and the support portion 104 are fabricated from metal (e.g., low gage steel)., although it is appreciated that other suitable materials, whether metallic or non-metallic (e.g., a high strength plastic) may be used to fabricated the tool 100. The guide portion 102 and the support portion may be integrally formed in a unitary construction via, for example a known molding process using known materials. Alternatively, the support portion 104 may be separately fabricated from the guide portion 102, and the guide portion 102 may be fastened to the support portion 104 using, for example, spot welding or another known technique.
As also illustrated in
As the points 188 of the pins 186 are advanced, depending on the hardness of the workpiece and the force or torque which turns the pins, the points 188 may pierce the edge of the workpiece and fasten the tool 100 to the workpiece. The spring elements 192 provide an outwardly directed bias force in the direction of arrow F in
While spring loaded pins are believed to be advantageously used as the fastener assemblies 184, it is recognized that other fasteners and mechanism could likewise be employed to fasten the tool 100 to a workpiece. In particular, clamping mechanisms may be advisable to secure the tool 100 to a metal workpiece, while the pins may be adequate for non-metallic materials.
In a further embodiment, additional holes (not shown in
The slope indicia begins at each of the left and right edges 210 and 212 and increments upward to 12 inches per foot (i.e., a 45° angle), and decreases back to a zero position coincident with the centerline 214 of the guide portion 102. Thus, three zero slope positions located 90° from one another are provided on the face 108 of the guide portion 102, and the tool may therefore be used in vertical and horizontal positions while providing a horizontal zero point from which to measure. Starting from the desired horizontal zero position, a reference line may be aligned with the nearest desired slope or pitch indicia from the applicable boundary line 220 to measure or evaluate angles from vertical or horizontal positions without mathematical manipulation of the reading of the tool which would otherwise be necessary if a user attempts to measure from a non-zero point on the slope indicia scale. Thus, because of the multiple zero slope positions and the increasing and decreasing scale of the slope indicia, the tool may be easily used on all sides (e.g., the left, right, top and bottom edges of a workpiece such as a sheet of drywall or plywood) while allowing direct reading of slopes and angles without mathematical manipulation of the reading of the tool. The inch rise per foot/degree of incline conversion provided by the face 108 is user friendly for quick angle settings on circular and miter saws.
While exemplary indicia for the face 108 of the guide portion 102 has been described, it is understood that other indicia may desirable in alternative embodiments. By way of example, different gradations or increments of marking may be included to provide more or less detail in measuring capability of the tool. Likewise, metric units for slope may indicated, and while it is believed that slopes of greater than 12 inches per foot are unlikely to be encountered for most projects, greater ranges of slopes may be indicated. Further, additional indicia may be added which does not pertain to angular degrees or slopes or pitches of inclines but is nonetheless useful information to users.
As illustrated in
The slope indicia begins at each of the boundary lines 220, increments upward to a maximum point corresponding to 12 inches rise per foot (i.e., a 45° angle) coincident with the centerline 214 (
While exemplary indicia for the face 110 of the guide portion 102 has been described, it is understood that other indicia may desirable in alternative embodiments. By way of example, different gradations or increments of marking may be included to provide more or less detail in measuring capability of the tool. Likewise, metric units for slope may indicated, and while it is believed that slopes of greater than 12 inches rise per foot are unlikely to be encountered for most projects, greater ranges of slopes may be indicated. Further, additional indicia may be added which does not pertain to angular degrees or slopes or pitches of inclines but is nonetheless useful information to users.
The indicia shown in
Having now described the structure of the tool, the versatility of the tool 100 will now be demonstrated in various exemplary applications in which methods to establish, determine and evaluate angles, slopes, and pitches are believed to be apparent. More specifically, the tool 100 is designed to work in conjunction with a reference line (e.g. chalkline, string, wire, and the like), and has a vast array of possible applications which may be performed without the need of another person to assist with the other end of the line.
A reference line 252 in the form of a string line is received in the slot 144 of the support portion, and a clip 253 attached to the string line maintains the line 252 coupled to the slot 144. In
A universal angle measurement and layout tool is therefore provided which overcomes the problems associated with existing tools and simplifies construction layout, evaluation and analysis by construction personnel. The tool may be provided at relatively low cost and is believed to benefit the construction process in a meaningful way. From professional to novice workers, the tool renders previously difficult tasks quite manageable, thereby saving, time, money, and aggravation to the construction process.
The tool 100 can be economically made in a number of processes, such as stamping, or numerous molding processes, or machining. The tool could be made of any suitable material, and may be produced in a variety of sizes and colors with varying scales and measurement indicia. This tool in its design for use on corners is self-adhering to the workpiece. When pulling on the string, the tool pulls snug onto the corner of the workpiece, providing a secure, and accurate line to the corner itself. Holes for pinning, barbs, or pinning apparatuses may be added to the tool to make it resistant to sliding when pulling along edges of applicable materials, and the tool could be made magnetic for steel applications.
While the invention has been described in terms of various specific embodiments, those skilled in the art will recognize that the invention can be practiced with modification within the spirit and scope of the claims.
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|U.S. Classification||33/429, 33/423, 33/414|
|International Classification||B43L7/00, G01B3/56, E04F21/00, B43L13/00, B25H7/00, E04D15/00|
|Cooperative Classification||B43L13/002, E04D15/00, E04F21/00, B43L13/00, B25H7/00, G01B3/563|
|European Classification||B25H7/00, E04F21/00, G01B3/56B, B43L13/00B2, E04D15/00, B43L13/00|
|Nov 9, 2009||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 4
|Jan 10, 2014||REMI||Maintenance fee reminder mailed|
|Jun 2, 2014||PRDP||Patent reinstated due to the acceptance of a late maintenance fee|
Effective date: 20140604
|Jun 4, 2014||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 8